3 Grounding Exercises for When You’re in Public

Exploring Your Inner Self: Benefits of Individual Therapy

 Ever get overwhelmed or anxious in public and don’t know what to do or how to help yourself? 

We’ve all been there! Here are three simple exercises to help you ground and regulate that aren’t obvious when life hits you while you are out and about.

Find the Rainbow

  • Look around your space and find something in every color of the rainbow – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple (or indigo, violet).
  • Mentally describe each colored object you find, noting the shades and textures. If you still feel uneasy by the time you get to purple or violet, start over.
  • Continue like this until your breathing has regulated and your head starts to clear. 


Kegels are wonderful because they can be done anytime, anyplace, without anyone noticing. When we connect kegels to our breath they can become a beautiful grounding exercise.

  • So on your inhale you will squeeze your pelvic floor and release with your exhale. If you have trouble figuring out how to squeeze your pelvic floor, imagine your genitals trying to drink the inhale through a straw.
  • Continue for as long as you need, deepening your breath as you go. 

Engage Your Senses

  • Sight – find and mentally describe 5 things you can see
  • Sound – notice 4 things you can hear, starting with sounds farthest from you and working your way towards sounds closest to you (the sound closest may be your own breathing).
  • Touch – notice the feel and texture of 3 things you can touch 
  • Taste – name 2 things you can taste. If you can’t taste anything, imagine flavors you enjoy tasting and taste the sensations.
  • Smell – name 1 thing you can smell. Again, if you can’t smell anything, use your imagination and conjure up your favorite scent.

With any therapeutic exercise, take what works for you and leave behind what doesn’t. What’s most important is that you take care of yourself. I hope these simple techniques help the next time you find yourself anxious in public.